February 24, 2014
6 Simple Things You Can Do Today to Clean + Organize Your Pantry
This week’s focus is on the pantry. (The weekly focus is always listed on the left hand side of the calendar in gray.) If you haven’t grabbed February’s Cleaning + Organizing Calendar, go get it! It’s free here.
First of all I’m going to start off an tell you that I am not assuming everyone has a pantry. If you don’t have a pantry just insert the words dry food storage. This week we’re concentrating on our dry food storage area – pantry, cupboard, what-have-you. The whole point of the weekly focus is to take a little time to clean and organize a small space in your home with the hope that over time your whole home is tidied up. If you have the time and your pantry needs a little love, join in.
Naturally, I look for the simplest way to get the best result so today I am sharing 6 things you can do right now (today!) to organize your pantry. Ready to dive in?
- Throw away any expired food. Donate any food to your local food pantry that you have more than you need of or food that you know you won’t get to so you aren’t throwing out food again.
- Remove items and wipe down your shelves.
- Divide your pantry into zones. This can as simple or as complicated as you’d like to make it. Here are the zones in my pantry from top to bottom – cereals, extra storage, baking, cooking, grains + pastas, canned goods, kids’ snacks and lunch food, and beverages and large snacks. At the bottom of the pantry I keep onions in a crock and grocery bags in a basket. Condiments are stored on one door and other paper products and stuff for the kids are on the other door.
- Group like items with like items – this simple key to organization holds true in the pantry – if you have multiples of the same thing, group them together. Five jars of spaghetti sauce? Line ’em up.
- Take items out of the original packaging to free up space and to give your space a more organized look and flow. You can use reusable food storage containers, large glass canning jars, or purchase food storage containers. This is something that I’ve resisted in the past, but once I changed over my containers I like how much easier it is to find and see what we have and how much is left. Serious game changer.
- Label, label, label. Labeling in the pantry is a great idea. Use a label maker, washi tape, an erasable marker, chalkboard labels….Really the options are endless. If you don’t like to label things and if you think it’s silly to label things in clear containers (I used to, too), just try it in your pantry and trust me on this. You’ll love it.
Have a great pantry storage tip to share? How about a pantry find? Share in the comments!